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Thursday, April 28, 2011
Stage 5 turkey
Today was another interesting day at the tour of turkey. After yesterdays difficult stage i was hoping that we would have a tired peleton and potentially an opportunity to spend some time in a breakaway to work on my flat land training. Fortunately for me a break formed on the first climb which was 15km long and at the top 10 of us had a gap of 2min. In the group was garmins thomas peterson, myself, one astana, team type 1 and an fdj rider who were high on gc. Therefore peterson was the virtual leader with me second. The next obstacle was to get the riders whom were 45min down after yesterdays stage to work with us for the next 200km. This is where i found my seat racing experience from rowing coming in handy. Like today, in the seat racing you have many different people with diferent motive and everybody is keen to get them selves the best outcome. I figured the only way to ensure co operation was promise that peterson and i would not contest the final sprint and work for the others as we were only interested on the gc and time. In all honesty had we contested it we would not have won most likely as there were some fast finishes in the group but certainly taking 2 riders out of the equation seemed to satisfy the other guys and we worked perfectly together all day. It is a bit like in a crew in a rowing race riding in the break, you need to encourage each other, stick together when its tuff and when you start to get the advantage on the peleton everybody enjoys the adrenaline of winning the days battle to survive to the finish. It was really a great day and group to ride for and we all seemed to co operate very well so was a great experience for me to have this with so many different teams, nationalities and objectives and at the end everybody seemed happy with the days racing, guys get beaten and we all accept that but the nicest part for me was the comraderie in our group for the entire 6hrs and in the end we enjoyed a 12min advantage on the peleton. Tom is 1st on gc with me second at 27sec and only 2sec behind me is the russian efimpkin whom is very strong so i will have my work cut out to control him. Anyway as i said before i am here to train so will try and practice my ability to defend my position on gc. Fingers crossed for a good next few days.